Yeah, I’m going to keep watching this series. Not much else to watch on Fridays. Plus, have you guys seen the upcoming shows for the winter season? It’s pretty slim pickings.
— Why does every episode have to start off with a younger version of Kousei crying in some form or other? Why does the story feel the need to repeatedly hammer home the fact that he was a crybaby?
— Oh good, Kaori comes over to Kousei’s home, finds a dusty piano, and starts apologizing to it. She even hunches over the piano and cries. Uh, I guess in her manic pixie dream world, the piano has feelings. Funny, isn’t it? She can actually treat an inanimate object with kindness. Too bad her mentality here doesn’t apply to everything and everyone else in her life.
— Haha, more violent slapstick where the guy takes the brunt of the punishment! Soooo funny. Guys, I’m five and I like seeing people get hurt! BUT GUYS, WE SEE IT IN OTHER RESPECTED ANIME LIKE FMA, SO IT’S COOL!
— Oh good, Kaori swiped Kousei’s wallet and entered him into the competition herself. Well, that’s to be expected. It’s not like I thought the girl would let up and soften her personality any. But man, who needs to live life when you’ve got your friends to make your decisions for you? Oh right, right, it’s just “friendly” encouragement. Some people just need a push. Too bad that push feels more like a shove. And it’s too bad that shove feels more like a series of unending abuse. I don’t dispute the idea that sometimes our friends just need encouragement in life. But there are boundaries. There are lines we shouldn’t cross.
— I don’t understand why people always feel as though it’s all or nothing, i.e. either you force someone like Kousei to do what you want, or you’re not a good friend whatsoever. That’s what I don’t get. It’s fine if you guys want to encourage him to play the piano. Honestly, if I was his friend, I would too. But I wouldn’t do it this way. That’s all I’m trying to say. I don’t disagree with the results, I disagree with the methods. People act like I don’t want Kousei to ever play the piano again. People act like I want the guy to waste his world-class talent. No, I just want to see a story where the guy gradually works his way back to playing the piano instead of being violently abused by a cute girl.
— I also hate it when people act like Tsubaki. She’s mad at Kousei for having a girl over at his house, but of course, she hasn’t bothered to confess her true feelings to the guy. As such, she has no grounds to stand on. Shit or get off the pot. Since she never made a move, she has no reason to be mad. No, her behavior isn’t funny or cute. It’s just obnoxious, and the last thing I want is to encourage this sort of behavior.
— This image thing is dumb. I only wish Kousei could stand up for himself, but he’s not a likeable character either. He’s completely spineless. I only wish he could make his own decisions. If it’s to ultimately play the piano, then fine, but just make your own decision. In a story like this, where the main character tries to overcome a great trauma, you need his actions to feel authentic. Without authenticity, then nothing matters. You can never tell if the happy ending is real or not. You can never tell if the protagonist has simply replaced his trauma with another trauma. You need authenticity. Unfortunately, there isn’t a single authentic thing about Kousei’s actions. After all, he only ever does anything after Kaori or Tsubaki yells at him enough.
— Oh wow, Tsubaki now claims she doesn’t want her childhood friend to suffer. Here’s the problem, though. After treating him so poorly for the past five weeks, I no longer know what to believe. Does she really not want him to suffer? Or is she just jealous that Kaori has managed to accomplish more with Kousei in just a few weeks than she ever could in years?
— Uh-huh, he’s turning his suffering into notes. That sounds all poetic and shit, but again, Kousei’s actions lack authenticity. It’s always easy to say flowery things when you’re not the one actually suffering. But none of this means anything to me because it has never felt as though Kousei is allowed to make his own decisions.
— I don’t see why I should feel sorry for Tsubaki and her unrequited love for the main character. She has never made a move, so she has no one to blame but herself. It’s the 21st century. If you like a guy, it’s okay to tell him you like him. Unfortunately, she hasn’t. And it feels like she’s only dating this Saito guy out of retaliation. Like fine, I’m no longer in the picture, so I’ll date someone I’m not all too hot about. Yes, she admires Saito, but does she really like him? No, it’s clear that Tsubaki’s true feelings are for Kousei. And that’s ultimately cruel to Saito. He’s expecting Tsubaki to give it her all, but we all know her heart isn’t in the right place. And you know exactly what’ll happen too. They’ll date for a short bit, and Tsubaki will convince herself that she’s truly happy with Saito. But one day, Saito will look at Tsubaki as she’s staring at Kousei or something. And he’ll realize that he’s second place. He’ll realize that Tsubaki never really tried to make them work. And it’ll be horribly heart-breaking for a guy who has done nothing wrong but fallen in love with an immature girl who can’t be honest about her feelings.
— Meh. Kaori apologizes for pretending as though she doesn’t see his pain. She apologizes for irresponsibly encouraging him. But whatever, the damage’s been done. Again, it’s not really Kaori that I object to. I don’t really blame her for anything. She doesn’t know anything about Kousei’s problems. She doesn’t really know anything about his mom and how he was abused. She certainly doesn’t know that he blames himself for her death. My primary problem with the show is its tone. I dislike the way it frames these serious problems in such a silly way. I hate how it wants us to feel sorry for these terribly immature characters. Yes, kids are immature, and as a result, Kaori will act immaturely. It’s not unrealistic at all that she would be shitty to Kousei, and be inconsiderate of his feelings. But again, the accuracy of her character is not what I’m disputing. People keep coming here and going, “Well, she’s immature so of course she’d act that way,” as if I want the story to rewrite her character. No, I don’t. I don’t think you need to rewrite any of these characters. But you do need to frame them properly. Basically, my beef is that the show treats her as this manic pixie dream girl who can do no wrong. Even as she’s standing here, apologizing to Kousei, you don’t feel as though she’s really learned anything. You feel like this is just another scene to paint the girl in a positive light. But the truth is, she’s done a lot wrong. She has a lot to repent for. But that’ll never happen. And that’s fucked up.
— If Kousei doesn’t want to play the piano, he gets physically and emotionally bullied. On the flip side, what are the consequences that Kaori has to face? A few crocodile tears by the opened window? Seriously, that’s it. That’s all we see. Kousei even thanks her: “It was you who swept away all that dust.” In the end, we’re just kissing Kaori’s ass.
— Even when she’s with Saito, all Tsubaki can talk about is Kousei. Man…
— If Tsubaki wants to be by Kousei’s side, she has to put herself there. What has she done in the past two episodes to get closer to him, though? To actually help him, though? So this is just meaningless whining.
— But I get it. She wants him to look at her. She doesn’t want to have to tell him to look at her. She tells him to do everything else, but she actually wants him to come to his own decision to look at her. In other words, she wants his feelings for her to be authentic. Boy, that’s a shocker. The problem, though, is that relationships aren’t actually this simple. Relationships take two people to tango, and if she’s just going to sit there and wait for his love, then nothing will happen. This isn’t the olden days anymore. You don’t just sit passively and wait for the guy to sweep you off your feet anymore. But even if we were in the olden days, those maidens of the court had no problems confessing the depths of their feelings to their lovers through passionate, heart-wrenching letters. So what’s Tsubaki’s excuse?
— Afterwards, Kousei goes to comfort Kaori. He even gives her a piggy-back ride. I thought she was dating Saito now. This is exactly my point. Yo, guys and girls can totally have platonic relationships. This isn’t one of them, though. This is also what I meant when I said that Tsubaki wouldn’t be giving a hundred percent effort to Saito. She clearly likes Kousei, and she will never get over him if she doesn’t put some distance between herself and her childhood friend. The grass is greener where you choose to water it. And even though she is officially with Saito, she continues to emotionally connect with Kousei. In the end, she’s not being fair to either guy. But like with Kaori, it’s not Tsubaki that I primarily have a problem with. After all, this isn’t the first time a person has strung along two other people because the former doesn’t know what he or she wants. Rather, my problem lies with the anime. It’s framing Tsubaki as this poor thing who has been replaced by Kaori. It’s framing Tsubaki as this lovelorn girl who hasn’t been given a fair chance. It frames Kousei as this oblivious fool who’s really at fault for not understanding a maiden’s heart. The point is, the show’s subtext is all wrong.
— All I can think here as I’m watching this scene is… man, this is horribly unfair to Saito. But he’s like this intruder. He’s such a minor character that the story doesn’t even care how he feels until it’s time for him to realize that Tsubaki never really wanted to date him.
— The story then introduces a pair of new faces, and they both want revenge on Kousei. I guess this is how we’re going to stretch this story out into a 2-cours series. Just have these rivals pop up out of nowhere.